Preseason Wrap-up: Wolverine Football

Halfway through the season and the Wolverines are no way near done. After a heartbreaking loss against Canyon to start the season, fans started to count the team out. Losing a game 54-20 would demotivate most teams. For Aliso it lit a spark, and the team went back to the basics and were able to win their next 3 games until the streak was ended when Aliso lost to Fountain Valley.

After the Canyon game, Coach Callahan described change in the team’s mentality saying, “we took a little step back and realized we were doing a little too much so we simplified what we did and really focused on the fundamentals and playing our brand of football.”

Coach Callahan spoke about how the teams focus throughout the season have been centered around perfecting the little things. This team is very young as many of the seniors had never played football up until that point in their high school career, and for many players, this is their first year on varsity. Having a young team like that can come with many challenges but it can also significantly raise the potential of the team. 

The team has many star players this season that have helped the team achieve success. Most notably is senior Jack Gill who is first on the team for most receiving yards per game, after the Fountain Valley game, Jack had an overall 265 receiving yards. Jack Gill is also first overall for most touchdowns this season with 8 in total, which is 5 above Dylan Kissen and CJ Besuzzi, who are tied for 2nd with 3 touchdowns apiece.  

When looking ahead towards the league it’s hard not to be too optimistic considering the potential of this team but Coach Callahan advocates for taking it one game at a time. “We would always love to win the league,” He told Growling Wolverine reporters “our league is extremely competitive but we always take it one game at a time.”

Their first priority right now is taking care of the little things, and polishing their game before facing Trabuco and San Juan Hills in league. 

The team has already achieved many accomplishments this season, earning a win against their rival Dana Hills on September 9. This game was very special to Aliso due to the history between the two teams. In the 2021 season, Aliso had lost to Dana at home 29-28 with a last minute touchdown by the Dolphins to take the lead in the 4th quarter. The rematch in the 2022 season was highly anticipated and was the most attended away game this season for the Wolverines. Having the opportunity to play them again was a highlight for a majority of the players on the team. Being able to beat them 38-24 was a special moment for the team and many of them will remember that victory for the rest of their life. 

With a team so young, Coach Callahan wants to be able to look back on this season with pride in the development of the players. 

“We taught the game of football to a lot of kids, we made these kids better people and not just football players. At the end of the season with all that we have some wins and maybe a championship.” 

The Wolverines have already shown to improve from the 2021 season, already having a better record than the year prior. Fans are hoping they continue this positive streak as the season continues.